the pain, the agony, the whatever…

Those that know me really well know about the medical issues I’ve been going through in recent years. I’ve had pain so much at issue, it sapped me of my strength at times.

I don’t make light of this because of anyone else’s issues. I just bring it up to share my story. Am I cured? No. Am I closer to being cured than I was a year ago? Most definitely. I have had pain in the left hand side of my body in a very definitive way for about three years. I’ve had some level of signs and symptoms for 15-18 years. I’ve learned to live with the pain. It is an every day occurance

When things flaired up to the bad level they’ve been at in recent years, I went back and visited my GP doctor that I had used since junior high. He was the one who inspected me after the hit and run I was involved in while in high school. A second doctor in advised me that it may actually be multiple problems causing one big issue.

At this point, I’ve been through about 15 doctors. I’ve learned to live with the pain, the tingling, and the numbness.

Should I have lived with it all these years? I don’t know. Based on the reactions of various doctors over the past few years, I am not sure any single doctor would have done anything for me prior to now. But now, I’ve had a release of the ulnar nerve at the cubital tunnel on both arms, and a fusion surgery between two of my vertebrae in my neck. The biggest thing I have noticed? I don’t have migraines developing anymore like they used to.

Anyone know what a feedback loop is?

Think about what happens when you get an audio feedback loop. That is a nasty sounding squeal. So imagine what happens when you translate that in to a headache. The pain in the head travels down in to the nerves in your neck. Because of the entrapment of the nerves, it causes your neck muscles to tighten up, releasing more pain back in to your head. If I took pain meds, it would never really clear up because the muscles kept the pressure on. If I took a muscle relaxer, the pain would go down in to my stomach, causing me to get nauseous, and eventually tighten my neck back up anyway. Only a combination of the two would help cure it.

Weird sinus stuff and other goings on in my head still cause weird pains/other feelings, but nothing like the debilitating issues I had prior to my neck fusion surgery.

Unfortunately, I’m still not done. But it is progress. They’re working their way down my left arm now. Currently the focus is on my shoulder. They will keep on down to my elbow, wrist, and hand if necessary afterwards. Good thing is it seems like my right arm is just fine after the one surgery.

I really can’t wait for all of this to be taken care of. I look forward to being able to actually work out again. My arms used to feel like they were kinda like this:

However, lately, they feel more like this:

I would like to be back to normal.

Meh…

Thankful

Ya know, a lot of people have been doing something they are thankful for every day. I’m not one that keeps up with doing things like that very often, but let me give a few highlights…

First and foremost, I am thankful for God, who loves me and takes care of me, even despite some of the most royal (albeit unintentional) screwups.

I am extremly thankful for my wife. Even though we don’t always see eye-to-eye (not always possible given our 14 inch height difference), she loves me and stands by me in everything I do. She’s a gift from God to help in those unintentional gaps I mentioned above. She keeps me fed with the most wonderful tasting meals. She keeps the house clean over and above anything I would normally notice. And she just generally keeps me in line.

I’m thankful for my move to Arizona. It’s provided me with many good things…

I’m thankful for the job I have, which has helped me realize I have a passion for a certain kind of work that I just need to stick with.

I’m thankful for being out here and in this job, because it is giving me a chance to complete a Masters degree in the next couple of years which will be very helpful to the direction I hope for my career.

I’m thankful for the physicians I have access to. They have cured some of my ailments, and are continuing to work on the rest. While I’m not 100%, I am doing much better than in recent years (no dehabilitating migraine headaches since my neck surgery!!!!).

I’m thankful my wife has rediscovered her love of the work she does. It is wonderful to see that spark in her eye each day.

I’m thankful to have the chance to explore a different part of this wonderful world.

Ummmmm… I’m sure I will think of more things. Just be forewarned, it maybe March 17th before another comes to mind. But just because I can’t think of it right now doesn’t mean I’m not thankful!!!!